” Enduring Situations and Practices for Growth and Prosperity ” – December 28, 2021.
The level of happiness of Indians rose to ecstatic when Parag Agrawal took charge as CEO of Twitter. According to a research report a few years ago, about 33% of immigrant bounded companies in America were started by Indians. About 25% of Engineering and Technology companies between 1995-2005, and about 33% of Engineering and Technology companies between 2006-2012 have been the contribution of immigrant Indians. Americans have also bought several of these companies for billions of dollars.
The dominance of Indians among CEOs of 30% of Fortune 500 companies, and one third of engineers in Silicon Valley companies have also been detailed in research reports. Management, Communication, Hard work, and Human Resources have been the chief causative factors responsible for the accomplishments of Indians.
Indians make up 1% of the American population ; and 6% of employees in the Silicon Valley area. More than 10 lakhs out of the 40 lakh Indians are scientists and engineers. In cities like Seattle Indian engineers make up 40% of those from other countries. It is no surprise then that Indians occupy positions in the higher echelons of specialists in many organisations.
The secret of Indian success is also not new. Management Guru, Corporate Strategist, Educator, and Author – late CK Prahalad ( Michigan State University) cited the following as our success mantra : undue importance to caste certificates, undue importance to birth and death certificates, fierce competition for space in schools and colleges, inadequate educational infrastructure facilities, and failure to recognise and accept abilities openly constituting the ‘barriers’ one needs to ‘break’ for progress in India from a very young age. Indians gain immense experience in healthy competition, tackling rivalries, and problem solving in every stage of life making them well equipped in these traits. It also constitutes the main stepping stone to a person’s success. On the flip side it gives rise to insignificant, inconsequential, and inessential pleasures whenever an Indian becomes the CEO of any American company in the idle hope that we will be the ultimate controller of American companies and even American economy. In effect it is not of any great importance either. Many may not be even be aware of the fact that long before anyone becomes the CEO they become “American Citizens” with their full belonging to our nation India less revealing.
It is against this background we should with pride view the contributions of the doyens of Indian industry through a different but rational prism. Ratan Tata, Rahul Bajaj, Venu Srinivasan, Mallika Srinivasan, Narayanamurthy, Asim Premji, Sridhar Vembu, Mukesh Ambani, Aditya Birla, Kiran Majumdar Shah, Anand Mahindra, Shiv Nadar, and other such Indian corporate giants afforded opportunities and employment to crores of Indians in diverse sectors economy like, Computers, Information Technology, Communication, Housing, Construction, Consumer goods, Renewable energy, Hotels, Entertainment, Media and the likes without being recognised or remembered ‘deservingly’. Instead we even go to the extent of criticising or even pouring scorn without any respect on some or many such individuals as Leaders of too big companies with an indirect hold on the governance of our nation as a whole. Aditya Birla employed 1.5 lakhs, Infosys’s Narayanamurthy employed 2 lakhs, Reliance employed 2.5 lakhs, Mahindra employed 2 lakhs, HCL employed 1.5 lakhs, Wipro employed 2 lakhs, Tatas employed 7 lakhs, TVS employed 60000, Bajaj employed 50000 and the list goes on. No less than 30 lakhs and even comparable enough to the Central Government Employee strength of 40 lakhs or so. We need to discept and debate if the immigrant Indian CEOs /employees in America had willingly accepted the positions offered or were compelled to accept jobs due to lack of the right opportunities and support for their talent in India.
Indian entrepreneur, GR Gopinath looks at this issue from his own perspective. He terms this as : ” Victory for America ; not for India”. His reason : ” Skills and enterprise of Indians have been utilised in a constructive manner by the Americans. India lost its ability to channel this expertise.”
At this juncture it will be worth looking at China and its manoeuvres on this issue. China has built on its own accord, on its own land hugely competitive organisations of high calibre in the world like “Alibaba, Ten Cent, Baidu, Weibo, Huawei, Xiaomi, ZTE, Great Wall Motors, Fox Conn and the likes with the right kind of opportunities, education, training, and experience with little brain drain. Chinese people are the sole beneficiaries of employment and sustenance. India needs to strive hard to encourage and establish Indian talent within its own land even while fully recognising the fact that China and India are nations portraying different governance structures and abilities.
India is a flourishing democracy ; its leaders are elected once in 5 years usually by the citizens democratically. India is also home to rule by a single party or a coalition group in both the Centre and States.
China is a one party nation; one party government ; prevailing 8 hour work day with employee welfare laws and schemes; no strikes or bandh ; no struggle or scuffle; no lockouts or obstructions ; no condemnation meetings; and no false propaganda against the Government (they are put down vehemently). Ability and capacity beget credit and acknowledgement, and prosperity can be attained within the nation itself.
It is still doubtful in our country if such promises and recognition are possible. It is also difficult to compare the two nations as each has its pros and cons.
Just like the beetles go where the flowers are, Indians will go to places where there are better opportunities. It is our natural law; it is in our psyche.
About 6 lakh Indians have adopted the citizenship of America and England in the last 5 years. There is a need to look into the reasons why it has happened. Research is also needed on the aspects of why and how Indians successfully start organisations in America.
Equality of Education and Job Opportunities within India ; Opportunity to start one’s own enterprise with ease and without any red tape ( less beaurocratic paperwork and officialdom) ; A system shorn of bribery ; Approval for business based on Single Window processing spontaneously ; Implementation of people welfare/progress plans and programs without political interference and Opposition – will be the key requirements to keep Indians within our shores and make India Great.
The above may sound ‘obvious’ and may even be dismissed easily. But, as the 30th American President, Calvin Coolidge, emphasised in his governance : ” Take care of the OBVIOUS ; 50% of the PROBLEMS will be taken care of themselves”.
” Dieu avec nous”
Tuesday, December 28, 2021 – 9.59 a.m. (IST)
Tidbit : ” He is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive; but those who can best manage change”. – Charles Darwin.
( This is meant to be a short essay )